17 – Inspiration: Storytelling and Myth

Druidry is a religion of stories. We tell myths of the gods and their deeds, and share folk stories of the spirits and Good Folk. These are important lessons for us to learn how to interact with these beings, to begin to know their personalities, and to help us ground our worship in ancient ways.

As I first came to ADF and Druidry, I was also taking a Celtic culture course in university, and had to read The Táin. There was something in this tale that spoke to me, and I quickly sought out more Irish myth. It is the reading of these tales that led to my seeking direct experiences of the gods of the Tuatha Dé Danann.

But we also create our own stories, as individuals and as Groves. Telling the tales of how the Kindreds are present in our lives brings our worship into the present day and reinforces that we belong to a vibrant and living faith, especially when these experiences are shared with others.

The best example of this in our Grove is that of An Cailleach — that is, our particular Cailleach who reigns over the Winter on the Oak Ridges Moraine. She is like the other Cailleachan but is also local, and so where we may tell some traditional stories of Cailleach Beara, we also have our own local mythos which we draw upon in our rites. The mysteries of An Cailleach and the Summer Corn, and of the House of Stone are our stories that we will tell and re-tell. As new people join us, they hear these stories also, and become part of them.

Around the wheel-year is a circle of stories. At Bealtaine, we tell of how the Tuatha Dé Danann came to Ireland, and we claim our land also. At Lughnasadh, we tell of how Lugh instituted the funeral games for Tailtiu, and we mourn for her also. At Imbolc, we hear of all of the deeds of Brighid, and we receive her blessings also.

Our Bards are the keeper of these stories, and of the ancient tales. We would do well to honour those who learn and remember them, and share them at feasts and around fires. And our ritualists also, who can bring these stories to life through magical action. We, ourselves, can draw on these tales in times of need, searching for our own experiences within them. They are part of the human experience, and so are we.

[ 30 Days of Druidry ]

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